I haven’t written since May. My son is still plodding along, facing his struggles daily. I am too.
When I started this blog, my altruistic idea was to help promote awareness. Guess what? Awareness is pretty vague. So was I.
I learned a lot by blogging. There are hundreds of thousands of parents out there who struggle with the day to day challenges of parenting a special needs child. Most are supportive, encouraging and seek the same from others. I have made good online friends here and for that I will always be grateful.
I came to learn over the course of blogging that a small minority have agendas that bear no resemblance to my own. There are cliques, braggers, accusers, drama queens, and those who simply seek the almighty stats, whether by humor and self-deprication or by bullying others. I think I’d find this breakdown no matter what the genre.
I learned about the spectrum and how diverse it is. I learned there are thousands of parents struggling with the loss of a child and children who are much higher and lower functioning than my own. It has been a humbling and enlightening experience. But it’s been my son who has taught me the most of all. He has taught me patience, kindness, not to judge others, to find humor in sadness and most of all, he’s taught me about a love that transcends all other loves, that of a parent for her child.
I did not write between then and now, nor say goodbye because I never intended to leave. I intended to step away, pursue a dream and return. At the heart of it all, I love to write. The posts on this blog were hastily scrambled together to meet a self-imposed deadline, without much editing and with much emotion, not my best writing. Soon, all of this will come down. I will privatize this blog and put it to bed.
In the end, my son has grown. Like any child, spectrum or not, he’s had his happy and sad, his struggles and achievements. Writing about them had its rewards. There are stories that will remain untold about our second trip to Hawaii, play dates, video messages and texts with a girlfriend, progress through real (not school based) physical therapy, litigation over an IEP (resulting in a settlement that provided funding our therapies), a new IEP that is garbage and will result in no funding this year (we’re opting to keep him in private school), a new teacher who I’m unsure of yet, echolalia and more echolalia (think: theme song from Green Acres) and more. Ultimately, I didn’t see how it putting these stories here would help him on his path. I’m hoping the more thoughtful writing I’ve been doing since April will provide him with some form of income for his future. Knock.on.wood.
For those of you who are interested, I’ve written the first in a series of possibly five novels which I would characterize as young adult, fantasy, sci-fi, literary fiction. I, personally, love the world, the characters, and the story of good versus evil. Maybe someday, the little guy will understand it. (We’re still struggling with what is good or evil and why we don’t shoot the good guys). I might finish editing by next February and start the second book soon. I hope to find a literary agent, without suffering too many rejection letters. And then, someday, if my writing is as fun for others as it has been for me, there will be a book on the shelves or on a Kindle or Nook, with my name on it.
The most important page of that book will be the dedication to my son who inspired me to find myself, follow my own dreams and make them come true for both of us. As parents, we have to remember that sometimes the hardest thing to do is continue to live our own lives while we help our children live theirs.
I will miss you all greatly. You may still hear from me from time to time on Twitter or Facebook. Thank you for reading here.